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Three Brits arrested after plot to import $28MILLION in crystal meth

Three Brits arrested after plot to import $28MILLION in crystal meth 2

Three Brits arrested after plot to import $28MILLION of crystal meth into Australia by air cargo is uncovered by border cops

  • Three British nationals have been charged over a 24-kilogram meth seizure
  • The trio were arrested in UK this week suspected of sending the drugs as cargo
  • It’s alleged the three were trying to import the huge haul into Australia 
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Three British nationals have been arrested and charged after crystal meth with a street value of $28million was seized on arrival as air cargo to Australia last year. 

Australian Border Force discovered the consignment of 24 plastic bags totalling 24kg of crystal methamphetamine in July last year. 

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The trio, a 52-year-old woman, a 52-year-old man and a 51-year-old man, were arrested in the UK as part of an organised crime partnership between UK police and Border Force. 

It’s alleged the woman, from Croydon, works in the cargo sector and accepted a shipment which she failed to properly inspect before it was marked as security cleared. She is also accused of having tracked the shipment through the cargo system. 

A trio of Brits allegedly tried to smuggle a  huge quantity of meth into Australia, with one woman using her position as a cargo security sector to send the consignment out of England (Pictured AFP and NCA arrest one of the three)

A trio of Brits allegedly tried to smuggle a  huge quantity of meth into Australia, with one woman using her position as a cargo security sector to send the consignment out of England (Pictured AFP and NCA arrest one of the three)

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Police seized 24 bags of crystal meth (pictured), worth up to $28million on Australia's streets, after they intercepted an air cargo consignment from England

Police seized 24 bags of crystal meth (pictured), worth up to $28million on Australia’s streets, after they intercepted an air cargo consignment from England

The 52-year-old man, from Sevenoaks, is accused of travelling to the Croydon shipping centre and paying for the shipment to be sent to Australia. The 51-year-old man from Orpington is alleged to have arranged the contact between the two. 

Australian Border Force officers selected the shipment for examination upon its arrival in Australia. Their inspection revealed the 24 plastic bags of the crystalline substance, which they found likely to be crystal meth before referring it to the Australian Federal police.

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Police estimate the drugs have a local street value of $28 million in Australia, four times their street value in the UK. 

The three suspected smugglers are charged with being concerned in the exportation of Class A drugs. The 51-year-old Orpington man was also charged with possession with intent to supply a Class B drug and production of a Class B drug after a number of cannabis plants were found at his address.  

Detective Inspector Guy Carmichael said: ‘These drugs would be worth a significant amount in the UK, some £4 million, but their value in Australia would have been remarkably higher at £16 million, or just shy of $28 million Australian dollars.

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‘Working closely with partners in Australia, including the Australian Federal Police, has seen a large quantity of these dangerous drugs taken off the streets and a suspected key supply chain taken out of action.

The drugs were seized by police on the Australian end of their flight after a 52-year-old UK cargo worker allegedly tried to pass them border controls through with a security approval

The drugs were seized by police on the Australian end of their flight after a 52-year-old UK cargo worker allegedly tried to pass them border controls through with a security approval

AFP Detective Acting Inspector Brendon Basford said the information that identified the two suspects was the result of an investigation into an Australian-based organised crime syndicate alleged to be responsible for multiple importations of illicit drugs, and the shipment that is the subject of these allegations has an estimated street value of just under AUD$28 million.

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‘AFP investigators identified a person of interest in the UK tracking a shipment in a manner that we believed was suspicious, and passed on the information we had to the National Crime Authority via the AFP’s international liaison network,’ he said.

The British arrests are linked to Operation Ironside. A 34-year-old man from Rose Bay in Sydney was arrested in October last year and charged over multiple illicit drug importations in cargo consignments.

The accused will appear in Croydon Magistrates Court today April 14, 2022. 

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